• Participant 2013: Niki Milioni
10-07-2013Nominated by Rietveld Academy with her collection Orama

Photo: Peter Stigter


About the collection


In the midst of creating my previous collection a radical turning point occurred.
I realized that what I felt was missing was joy, satisfaction and additionally the personal and human relation to my realms of fashion. The necessity and responsibility had outgrown sole aesthetic reasoning.


Being partly Greek, Greece’s current poignant situation has made me feel armourless. The context in which I wanted to reach out to was therefore naturally set.
In the heart of Athens I encountered through Praksis, a Greek human rights organization, eight beautiful children from Afghanistan, refugees. Having a lovely playful time I got to know their lifestyles and preferences, which were important for my decisions on color, details and finishings as part of my design process.


The collection is titled ORAMA, derived from ancient Greek language and meaning ‘vision’. All garments are made personally for each child, using natural materials, hand dyed and able to grow as they grow with incorporated Velcro tailoring.


I simply want to share the joy and love of dressing, enforcing and transcending their inner visions.


Why did you decide to study fashion design?
Thinking about and making fashion made me truly happy, like there is nothing else but that. I wanted to share and exchange this desire and curiosity with other people who feel the same way.


Name one of your inspirations
For this project it was all about the children as individuals; their energies, preferences, lifestyles. Parallel to that, important was the practical element, the sense of comfort, freedom and autonomy.


What will be your next step after Lichting?
After Lichting I will first go to Greece and hand over the garments of this collection to the children. When this circle is completed, I want to travel to remote places on earth, groups of people who still use traditional fabric and fashion making techniques, to work and learn. There is a group of women in North-Vietnam who grow hemp, weave and dye it partly as a healing process. Perhaps that is my first destination.